INKWELL 33: Shadows/ THE SHADOW OF SIN

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Here, dear readers, you will find Virginia's contrasting feelings. Her hidden shadows cry out for forgiveness from her dead mother.....I invite you to read.....

The blue of the sky was furrowed by a beautiful rainbow. That day Virginia went out to see the sea. It looked murky, she looks for the reflection of the rainbow. She couldn't find it. Perhaps it was the harbinger of a serious event, which would happen soon, in her life. ......

The sea begins to wake up, she remembers her childhood and adolescence. She recalls the most important events; while ....... she plays with the small waves. She observes them as they crash against each other, details the foam as they break up, delighting her with the music of the noise. She listens to that sound, of nature, as if for the first time.

In that coming and going of the waves Virginia analyzes her shadows. Those shadows of contradictory feelings that torment her. Thus she lets time pass, the sun is already saying goodbye. The darkness appears, before her, to remind her again of the darkness of her life.

The wind whispers to her ear....... as if it were alive, and somewhere it breaks the clouds, letting the stars shine through. Which she always considered her friends. But the one she always had in mind was the North Star. That one always guided her, on moonless nights, when she was temporarily lost in the sand. Suddenly there appears perhaps the dreariest storm ...... of her past ...... She thinks aloud ......

-How can I remove this sin from my soul? Forgive me, mother.-

Virginia had long been haunted by the shadow of guilt. She had become pregnant as a teenager. Her mother, Isabel Martinez, had warned her that the boy she liked was forbidden for her, but she never gave her any further explanation. That happened in the early twentieth century, where love slips were hidden until death. That was the case of Isabel. Her husband, Eulogio Federico Izaguirre, a high-ranking military man, had an unimportant affair with a cabaret dancer, Isolda. Isolda became pregnant and had a son, whom she named Federico. Federico was born 6 months before Virginia. Lady Isolde would find out years later, when her husband saved Frederick's life.

It seems as if time has not passed...... Virginia still sees clearly her mother's wild eyes when she tells her mother ...... the suspicion of her unexpected pregnancy. She clearly observes her reaction and still hears the heart-rending cry:

-It can't be, that's sin, it's sin, it's sin- and she collapses.

Isabel lies on the floor. Virginia tries to revive her but is unsuccessful. She runs for help. An employee of the house, Mr. Humberto, goes to look for the doctor. He arrives at Doctor Aurelio Zabaleta's office, he takes his briefcase with the indispensable for these cases. And they leave quickly .....

They enter the house. They go straight to the master bedroom. Isabel lies on the double bed she shares with her husband. She waits for the doctor to give her the cure for what has happened, although she senses that she has little time left........ The Doctor examines her, a pained grimace on his face..... He has known Isabel for years. Isabel realizes this and whispers in his ear, as if expecting a tragic end:

-Tell me, do I have little time left?-

To which Doctor Zabaleta replies:

-I don't know exactly how much time you have left. It seems to me that it is your heart, it is serious. I suggest that you make whatever arrangements you wish before your departure.-

At that moment Eulogio Federico arrives. He enters the room running. He takes his wife's hand, gives her a kiss and hugs her tightly, containing other emotions. ..... Although he had only one amorous encounter with the dancer, he never forgave himself for his mistake.

Isabel gives the order to leave them alone. They all leave the room. She tells her husband what happened. Eulogio Federico is shocked, he cannot believe it. His only daughter has committed incest and it is worse because of him. Isabel consoles him telling him not to be upset, she reiterates that she already forgave him many years ago. Now they have to figure out what to do with Virginia and the baby that is on the way.

Outside, the doctor questions Virginia about what happened. She panics...she doesn't know what to say. She begins to shake the curls out of her golden hair. Her eyes wander from one side to the other, confusing things. Nobody knows....begins to get lost in unimportant details.

The Doctor warns the parents about Virginia's confusion. They decide to send her to Aunt Antonia, a widow who lived in the country and had no children. There she would be quiet, away from any comments....... When the baby was born, she would be raised by Aunt Antonia...... They quickly told their daughter about the decision they had made. Virginia left the next day for her aunt's house.

Virginia still has, at 35 years old, that vivid memory in her mind. She remains shrouded in the pain of departure...... She was unable to say goodbye to her sick mother.

Also, she would find out months later, after having the baby, what had happened with Federico and who he really was. There was nothing she could do. The shadow of that evil seemed to haunt her. But she, reviewing her history, felt a deep longing that prompted her to undertake what she thought would be her mission from now on: to take care of orphaned babies. With this she would drive away what she considered to be the sin of her soul. She felt at peace with her past.

Little did she know how short-lived that peace would be. It was time to return to the house where she lived with her elderly father. She had returned to take care of him. He was in poor health. And she wanted to be by his side, showing her love and pampering him.

She arrived just in time ....... to say goodbye. Her old father, after asking her forgiveness for not confessing in time the kinship between her and Federico, fell asleep little by little. In his face was drawn the eternal peace of those who have already lived, leaving happily to their next home.

Virginia, in this way, made peace with her own inner judge and jury, allowing her to feel and receive Divine forgiveness.......

The shadow of sin© 2021 by María del Carmen Sánchez

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